Marmaduke Thunderpaws

August 10, 2015

Dear Rodent,

It appears you have taken up residence in my house, and I gotta say, I’m not crazy about the idea. I don’t know where your little paws and tail and beady-little eyes have been. And the idea of you scurrying around my house when the lights are out is just … *SHIVER*

Chewing your way into the Ziploc baggie of dog food was kind of ingenious though. And I get it, you like the little chicken bits better than the other plain ole pieces. I’d probably feel the same way.

But overnight you decided to chew your way through the bag of garbage I collected yesterday. (Yes, it’s my bad since I didn’t take it out to the garbage can last night, but, I didn’t really expect you to attack the thing!) From this little excursion, I’m assuming you have a taste for chocolate. The snack-size Three Musketeers bar wrapper left on the kitchen floor was licked clean.

Tonight, however, tonight was the kicker. I went to make my dinner (BBQ shredded chicken sandwich, pasta salad and corn on the cob), and the bag of buns laying on my counter, that were only purchased yesterday, was chewed into and an entire bun was missing! On top of that, the container of saltwater taffy sitting next to the buns was broken into. From what I can tell, you like carbs (since you ate the bun), but you’re not much into the sugary sweets of taffy. But you like chocolate. Maybe you’re female?

Long story short, your hours are numbered. I’m not usually a proponent of killing animals, but you shacking up in my house is just not acceptable.

Oh, and by the way, where in the heck are you pooping? A homeowner usually finds out they have a guest because they find droppings in weird locations … I haven’t found any. Where are you hiding your little surprises?

# eatthecheese # stayouttamyhouse # icky # thankgoodnessimnotagirliegirl

August 17, 2015

The rodent drama continues…

It’s been a week since I wrote you that little note, and it hasn’t seemed to bother you in the least. You squeak and patter across my kitchen floor like you have the run of the joint. You’ve even ventured into the living room, you little dare devil, you. I have proof! *points to the bag of leftover Qdoba tortilla chips where the bottom of the bag has been chewed through* It’s empty!

The first trap I set, even I wasn’t convinced would work. The fake, so-called American cheese (it wasn’t even the good Kraft stuff) didn’t tickle your fancy in the least. I know, because when I went to change the the food in there tonight, neither had even been nibbled on.

So I went and got a different kind, and a jar of peanut butter. Who in the hell doesn’t like peanut butter? Apparently YOU. Or…  you’re just too damn big to fit inside the trap. And that thought just creeps me out.

Sitting here the other night, working diligently on my next book, I heard you. As quiet as a mouse (ha!) I made my way into the kitchen but couldn’t find you. When I crouched down after your next noise, I realized you were in the cupboard. You know, the skinny one next to the dishwasher where everyone keeps their cookie sheets?

Mustering up all of my courage (and putting on a pair of shoes because the last thing I want you to do is run over my bare  feet), I opened the door and found nothing. Nothing but cookie sheets. So I walked a few steps and quickly swung open the cupboard door under the sink, hoping to scare the shit out of you (I still haven’t found your poop, by the way – not sure where you’re hiding THAT). You weren’t there either.

But what I did find was you chewed through a box that used to contain ant poison. I’m sure the box wasn’t sealed, but the little domes for the ants to walk into were in a closed bag. Now that bag is missing. Do you have an ant problem in your home? You coulda just asked – I would have given you something to help with the problem.

So long story short, or not really, tonight I heard you make a big commotion. I don’t know what had your panties in a twist, but you were NOT happy. I gave you some time to calm down before I went to check the cupboards. Again, you weren’t there, but I SAW YOU. I now know where you’re hiding and where you run to when you’re scared.

If this works out for the best, I’ll find that hole behind my washer you seem to be so very fond of and close it up – while you’re on the other side. I really don’t want to see your demise, I just want you to leave me and my house alone. Contrary to your belief, this is my joint, not yours.

August 20, 2015

Rodent update: Apparently it now has a name …

*drum roll please*

Maraduke Thunderpaws

# idontevenknowwhattosay # getouttamyhouse # itwasntme

August 21, 2015

Oh, Marmaduke. Whatever shall I do with you?

The good news is you’re running free … somewhere … other than in my house. Maybe you’re scurrying along the fence line trying to skirt around the neighbor’s dog. Or maybe you’re being chased by one of the cats in the neighborhood that like to get into fights on my doorstep. Or maybe … you know what? I don’t really much care. The point is, you’re not in my house anymore!

Last night was the final straw. I woke at 6am to the sound of items being torn into, movement, something that let me know you were on the move. I quietly put on my glasses, snuck out of bed and tip-toed into the living room, but you weren’t there. You’re never there! Giving up, I went back to bed. I mean, who gets up at 6am if they don’t have to??

But what I saw when I finally, actually woke up was that you had bypassed the divider I put between the kitchen and living room and came through the pass-through (which also means you were running on my couch!!). While the couch thing just grosses me out, what finally did you in was the fact that there was evidence you were walking on my laptop. ON MY LAPTOP.

First, it cost more than the couch. Second, my hands are on that thing every day for hours. EEW!

So I went investigating. In the two times we’ve been face-to-face, you’ve darted out from under the sink, around the corner (nearly biting it) and behind the washer. Do you have any idea the number of dust bunnies that lurk behind a washer and dryer? *haaaaCHOOO!* It took some maneuvering but I finally found where you were coming in. A hole, made by chewing through plaster or drywall or … who the hells knows? I’m not a building contractor!

I should mention, I found the little dome-thingy from the ant poison. You ate the contents AND the plastic, and yet you still lived to tell the tale. Apparently it was too big to fit in the hole so you left it for me. That’s okay. I took care of it for you.

I have come to believe one of my biggest worries with this whole scenario is true – I do believe you are a rat. I think that’s why you have been unphased by my traps. You just won’t fit in them! Several people suggested using the glue strips to catch you, which quite frankly, I find extremely inhumane. And mean. And … no matter what you chewed through (including the Toffee Crunch chocolate bar I got at Ghirardelli in Orlando), how many times you woke me up or freaked me out … I just couldn’t do that to you.

The hole has been patched with some steel wool and a LOT of duct tape until the wall can be permanently fixed. And the best case scenario, I think, has happened – you never ended up in one of those traps and you’re no longer in my house.

I’d like to say I’m gonna miss you, Marmaduke, but … I don’t like to lie. So instead, I’ll wish you good luck, suggest you stay away from cats, and ask that you please, don’t ever come back.

P.S. That picture up there is not an actual picture of Marmaduke. I only ever really got to see him in a blur running from point A to B, but I’m guessing this was close. And hell, I would NOT have been that patient to have photographed a rat. He woulda ended up with a box over his head!!

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